How to get an independent review of a decision we’ve made.
A review is when an independent reviewer takes a fresh look at the issue.
They look at the information, eg your case file, and they get evidence from you, us and other people directly involved, and make a ruling.
Here’s a video and written transcript about the dispute review process and Fairway Resolution Limited (DOC 44KB).
If you’re unhappy with a decision we’ve made, speaking with the person you’ve been dealing with is good way to sort things out. Here are some useful numbers:
- Claim-related issues: 0800 101 996
- Business levy issues: 0800 222 776
- Treatment provider service issues: 0800 222 070
If talking with the person you’ve been dealing with isn’t what you want to do, you can contact our Customer Resolutions team on 0800 650 222 or email email@example.com, or request a review.
Problems with a claim
If you’re unhappy with a decision we’ve made about your claim, we’ve got information to try and fix the problem before going to review. Find out more, go to:
You can apply for review of a decision made on:
- a claim
- a work injury (if you’re an employer)
- a levy paid or payable
- claims lodged with us prior to 1 July 2005 (you’ll be a registered health professional, or organisation, disputing their involvement in an injury caused by medical error).
You can apply for a review if you’re:
- a client, or their representative, in relation to any of our decisions on a claim
- an employer challenging a work injury decision
- any levy payer disagreeing with the levy paid or payable
- a registered health professional, or organisation, disputing your involvement in an injury caused by medical error (for decisions relating to claims lodged with us prior to 1 July 2005).
Making a complaint after applying for a review
You can still make a complaint at any stage about anything to do with the management of your claim or any decision we have made, even if you apply for a review. If all parties agree, you can put the review on hold while we sort your complaint out.
- Complete the ACC33 Application for review form (DOC 192KB), (also available from your local ACC branch, or ACC Inquiry Service Centre (call 0800 101 996), or write a letter to us that has in it:
- you’re applying for a review
- the date of decision on your claim
- your reason(s) for wanting a review
- the result you want from the review
- any cultural support or special needs (see below details).
- Send the completed form or your letter to the:
- For reviews relating to claims and entitlement:
PO Box 892
Waikato Mail Centre
- For reviews relating to levies:
ACC Business Service Centre
PO Box 795
- Our Review Unit will write to you letting you know we have your application. They then send it to the right team, so that team can review their decision.
- If this team review does not sort out the complaint, ie they make the same decision, you can go to mediation or we can request the case goes to a review hearing.
We can help you fill in the review application form. For our contact details go to:
You must apply for a review within three months of the decision date on your claim or invoice. We may accept late applications for a review where extenuating circumstances exist. For example, if your injury prevented you from being able to meet the timeframe.
The reviewer must contact you to set a date for the review within three months from the date we received your application, unless the case is sorted out before then.
Let us know if you haven’t heard from us within a month of lodging your review application. For our contact details go to:
You can bring someone to your review hearing to either speak on your behalf, eg your advocate, lawyer, union representative, or just someone to support you through the review, eg someone from your family/whanau.
You’ll need to make sure anybody speaking for you are made ready for the review.
Bringing your lawyer to review
If you want a lawyer to speak on your behalf you’ll need to get them ready for the review and pay them.
Let us know if you have special needs
Write on your review application or letter any special needs, eg language, religion, your lack of mobility, and any seeing or hearing problems.
Cultural support for your review
You need to write any cultural support you need on your review application or letter. This support for reviews is called ‘special arrangements’. It’s up to the reviewer to agree any special arrangements.
Special arrangements for Māori people may include:
- holding the hearing on a marae
- conducting the hearing in Te Reo Māori
- conducting the hearing with some degree of Maori protocol
- providing access to assistance from local Pae Arahi.
Special arrangements for Pacific people may include:
- allowing family or elder support
- conducting the hearing in the relevant Pacific language
- holding the hearing at an appropriate community venue
- arranging to have the hearing conducted by a specially appointed Pacific people’s reviewer.
People who can attend your review
Anyone who is directly involved can attend the review hearing, including:
- your reviewer
- you and/or your representative
- a support person (if you want one)
- a designated representative from ACC
- your employer and/or their representative (for work injuries)
- witnesses or experts (if applicable).
Review hearings are not open to the public.
You’ll have been contacted by the reviewer within three months of us receiving your application, setting a date for your review hearing.
You’ll need to get ready for the review:
- If you want a representative at the hearing, eg lawyer, let them know as soon as you can, so that they have time to prepare your case.
- If you want a witness to give evidence, you must let the reviewer and other parties know before the hearing date, and give details about what the witness’s evidence will be.
- Present any new evidence to the reviewer and other parties at least three working days before the hearing.
- Write down the main reasons why you disagree with our decision, to refer to during the review.
What to do if you can’t attend the review hearing
If you want to go to the hearing, but you can’t, eg because of an emergency:
- contact the review support officer before the hearing to let them know that you can’t attend
- get someone to go to the hearing for you and give your evidence in writing, or your they can present it for you
- ask the reviewer to reschedule.
If the reviewer decides the hearing date can’t be rescheduled, then it will continue in your absence.
What to do if you don’t want to go ahead with the review
We call it ‘withdraw from the review’, but what it means is that you don’t want your decision to be reviewed. If you want to withdraw, you can do it any time before the hearing without giving a reason. You must let either us or your reviewer know in writing that you’re withdrawing, and it’s also a good idea to follow-up with a phone call.
This is what happens at the review hearing
- The reviewer manages the hearing, which is generally informal. All the information that was used by us to make the original decision will have been made available before the hearing. This information is confidential and can only be used for the review hearing. Each party has will have a chance to have a say and ask questions.
- The review hearing will be tape-recorded, to provide a record in case there are any later hearings.
- Anyone giving evidence may be asked to take an oath or affirmation (that’s a promise to tell the truth). Reviewers can look at a range of material relevant to your case that, which may not be considered at a more formal hearing (for example at the District Court). The reviewer will sometimes allow cross-examination of a witness.
After the hearing, the reviewer decides whether costs can be awarded. If you want to know more about this, contact the review support officer or ask the reviewer at the hearing.
The reviewer will write to you with their decision within 28 days of the hearing. The decision is binding on all parties involved.
Appealing review decisions
If you’re unhappy with the decision made at your review, some decisions can be appealed. For more information go to:
Appeal an independent review decision
We are legally required to pay the reviewer’s costs.
Once the reviewer has made a decision, they may award costs for expenses you have incurred for representation, eg medical reports, transport costs and other reasonable expenses associated with your review hearing. We pay these costs when awarded, remember to talk to your case owner about it.
The maximum amount that a reviewer can award in relation to a review hearing is set out in:
Review Costs and Appeals Regulations 2002 (external link).
Reviewed: 1 June 2016